Belgium Visa Application - Requirements,Cost,Processing Time & Interview Tips


To travel to Belgium you need to get a Belgium visa. Getting a Belgium visa is an easy process,all you need to do is to provide all the necessary requirement needed for the visa processing. So in this post you will get to  know the necessary Belgium visa requirements and the application process.

 

This post is to answer frequently asked questions such as

How to apply for a Belgium visa

Requirements to apply for Belgium visa

Cost of a Belgium visa

Duration to process a Belgium visa

Belgium visa interview tips

 

 

Steps to process a Belgium visa
A decision will be taken by the consulate within 15 days from the date appearing on the stamp affixed to your travel document and indicating that your application is admissible.

However, this deadline may be extended up to 30 days and even, exceptionally, 60 days, if a more detailed examination of your application and/or additional documents are required. In that case, your application will be sent to the consulates, which will take the final decision.

Note likewise that one SCHENGEN State may require the other SCHENGEN States to consult it before issuing a visa to a national of certain third countries.

As a general rule, the Member State consulted will give a definitive reply within 7 to 14 days. If you are a national of a country on this list, make sure you lodge your visa application in good time (but at the earliest 3 months before the planned start of your journey) to avoid any disappointment and unnecessary costs.

 

Documents required to apply for a Belgium visa

A completed and signed application form, complying with the harmonised SCHENGEN visa application form. This form is available free of charge from consulates. You complete it in French, Dutch, German or, if you do not have a command of any of the national languages, ideally in English.

        a travel document (e.g. a passport), valid for at least 3 months from the date on which you intend to leave the SCHENGEN territory, or, in the case of multiple journeys, the date on which you intend to leave it for the last time.

        the documents indicating the purpose of your journey (e.g. documents relating to the itinerary, in other words confirmation of the reservation of an organised trip or any other substantiating document indicating the travel programme envisaged, etc. If you are a minor travelling without your parents or without your legal guardian, parental authorisation or the authorisation of your guardian will be required);

        the documents relating to accommodation (e.g. in the case of accommodation with a private individual, an invitation from the person hosting you, or in the case of a stay in a hotel, guesthouse, etc., a supporting document from the establishment offering accommodation or any other substantiating document indicating the type of accommodation envisaged, etc.);

        the documents indicating that you have sufficient personal means of subsistence, both for the duration of your stay on the SCHENGEN territory and for the transit to a third country in which your admission is guaranteed or a commitment that charge will be taken (Annex 3 bis);

        information making it possible to assess your intention to leave the territory of the SCHENGEN States before the expiry of the visa or, in other words, information indicating that you retain the centre of your interests in your country of origin or habitual residence (e.g. any proof that you have roots in your country of origin or habitual residence: attestation of employment, professional situation, receipt of regular income, ownership of real estate, family situation, etc.);

        suitable, valid travel health insurance covering any costs of repatriation for medical reasons, emergency medical care and/or emergency hospital care or death during your stay/s on the SCHENGEN territory. This insurance must be valid for the whole of this territory and the whole of the stay. The minimum cover is 30,000 EUR. In principle, it is taken out in your own country. Ask the competent consulate about the insurance companies whose contracts are accepted;

        If you are applying for a multiple-entry visa, you must in addition establish the need to travel frequently and/or regularly, inter alia because of your job or your family situation, and prove your integrity and reliability, inter alia by the legal use of visas issued previously, by your economic situation and by your desire to leave the territory of the SCHENGEN States before the expiry of the visa applied for;

        When you receive confirmation of the issue of the visa, add the proof of the transport that you will use to reach Belgium (non-transferable return ticket in your name). This proof is not required when you lodge the visa application, to avoid unnecessary costs. On the other hand, proof of the reservation of a return ticket may be demanded.

 

What to know before applying for a Schengen visa

1) When planning your trip, do not make the mistake of thinking your travel agent or the airline will be able to tell you if you need a visa. Make sure you find out for yourself. You can find out if you need a visa by going to the U.S. State Department website: http://travel.state.gov/visa/visa_1750.html, there is a lot of terrific information to be found here including notes for Americans on safety and security overseas.

2) Make sure your passport has at least 4-6 blank pages, your visa won't need that many but many of the consulates require at least two blank pages; this is an easy excuse for them to give you a hard time. If you need more pages they're easy to get through the National passport processing office. You can find information the process on the State Department's website.

3) Make sure your passport isn't going to expire for a while. The passport's expiration date must be greater than six months from the date of entry for the visa you are applying for. If your passport does not meet the requirements, you must renew your passport.

4) Your visa application. This is where you really need the assistance of a good travel visa service. You'll find that many of the visa applications are quite confusing. There are language usage differences that may have you scratching your head. If you are not sure, ask, do not guess, errors on forms can be costly.

5) Passport photographs. This is one I had a particularly difficult time getting my boss to do. Go to your post office or perhaps you have a drug store or photo processing store that takes passport photographs, get them, and if you are traveling a lot get a lot of extra photos. Most often you are required to submit two passport photographs with your visa application. You may get away with only providing one, you may get away with submitting a digital you took and printed on photo paper. It's not worth the risk. Get the extra photos.

6) Include your travel itinerary. Most applications require you include your travel plans as proof of entrance and exit dates. This would be the itinerary you get with your tickets or from the airline/travel agent.

7) Make sure you make copies of everything you send the consulate or visa travel service. This doesn't include your passport of course, but it's a good idea to make a copy of the first page in your passport just for your records. You will be sending your passport with your visa application and other paperwork.

8) Include a copy of your driver's license. This isn't a hard and fast rule, but just good policy. A lot of times a country may require this but neglect to mention or they may decide they want more identification information. This is a "Just in Case" preventative measure.

9) Do not forget the fee. If you are using a visa travel service, most likely you can simply provide your credit card number. If you are not, you will most likely have to provide a check for their fee as most of the consulates do not take credit cards.

10) A key challenge is the decision to appear at the embassy or consulate or simply overnight your application and materials to the appropriate place. In many cases, there won't be an option as the embassy or consulate is too far to travel to. If you are doing this on your own and are able, it may be prudent to go to the embassy or consulate yourself. Base your decision dependent on your time and patience level.

11) Finally, hire a travel visa service. These services are reasonable, quick and experienced. You do not save money doing it yourself and you certainly don't save hassle. Your travel visa service is there to help you with everything from completing forms to emergency turn-around times. Don't just go with any service. Investigate. I recommend Visa HQ www.visahq.com, for their experience and customer service.

 

 

Your application will not be admissible and will thus not be examined if you do not lodge a completed, signed application form, a valid travel document and a photograph, if you do not pay the visa fees and, in certain countries, if you do not agree to give the consulate your biometric data.

On the other hand, if you comply with these instructions, a stamp indicating that your application is admissible will be affixed to your travel document (unless that travel document is a diplomatic passport, a service passport and/or an official passport, or a special passport). This stamp has no legal effect.

prison), you must contact the municipality of your place of residence if you wish to extend your stay.

Is my visa only valid for Belgium?
Most short-stay visas issued by Belgian embassies and consulates are Schengen visas. These are clearly marked with the word ‘Schengen’.

A Schengen visa is valid for the territory of all Schengen countries and entitles the holder to stay in the Schengen area for a maximum of 90 days within a six-month period starting from the date of the first entry into the area.

If you have received a visa which is only valid for Belgium or the Benelux countries (i.e. Belgium, the Netherlands and Luxembourg) or which is not valid for one or more Schengen countries, this will be clearly indicated on the visa.

 

Belgium visa interview tips

1. Prepare a “grab bag” of documents frequently requested

Get a clearbook to hold all the documents that embassies usually require and make at least five copies of each of these documents. Usually, the embassy will need to look at the original copy for verification purposes and then just keep a photocopy. Make sure that your photocopies are clear. It will save you the trouble of having to photocopy another clearer copy while at the embassy

Documents to include in this clear book are:

·         Birth certificate (must be certified by the National Statistics Office)

·         Marriage certificate* (if annulled, you will probably need a copy of your Marriage Certificate annotated by the NSO certifying that the marriage was declared null and void.

·         Latest Income Tax Return

·         For business owners, include business permits, business license and (audited) financial statements

·         Photocopies of previous visas you have been issued

·         ID pictures: Different embassies will have different size requirements, so when you have your picture taken, have the picture reproduced in different size dimensions. I suggest you get one picture taken in the standard 2x2 white background and one in the US visa size and Schengen size. (Note that for all visa requirements, both ears must be shown and women should not be wearing earrings.)

·         Proof of income and ownership such as land titles and or car registration documents

Keep all your old passports with other visa stamps as reference. It may not fit in the clear book, but it should be made part of your visa app “grab bag.

2. Keep a list of the countries you’ve visited

Update the list of countries you've visited the way you would update your CV. Many embassies require you to list the countries you have visited within a certain number of years. Some embassies will specify a time frame, some will not, so it is best to start from countries you have visited from 5 years back. Keep a soft copy of this list in your computer and update it each time you travel.

3. Make a checklist of the visa application requirements – and triple check that!

When applying for a Schengen visa via the Italian embassy, for example, a checklist of requirements (which you can download along with the visa application form) is mandatory in the list of documents to be presented to the visa processing center. It is not a standard requirement for all countries, but a checklist is definitely a good thing to have on hand. Make one of your own if your destination country does not require it.

Double and triple check each requirement, line by line if you have to. It will be worth the trouble because there are varying specifications for each country.

Look out for fine print like required payment mode: Is a manager’s check required? Can you pay in Philippine pesos, US dollars or Euros? Tip is to pay in US dollars so you will not be subject to currency fluctuations. Remember to check for exact amount, e.g. if it says $58, bring $58 as some embassies will not offer change.

Double check the location of the visa processing centers as their addresses on the application forms may not be updated.

4. Have a standard template for letters of introduction to consuls

Embassies may require you to prepare a letter to the consul to introduce yourself and state your reason for travel. Make a standard template for this letter of introduction, save on your “Travel Docs” folder and just fill in whenever you need to apply for a visa.

This cover letter should have:

·         Header with your name, contact details and if available, your visa application reference number

·         Reason for travel

·         Duration of stay

·         Mention of other countries you have visited

·         How you will fund your trip

·         Day by day travel itinerary as an attachment

5. Make your travel agent your travel buddy

Find a travel agent you can trust and make him or her your travel buddy. She can act as a semi-one-stop shop and help you book tickets and hotels that you won't have to pay for yet (you will want to wait till you get the visa before paying for a ticket or hotel), and facilitate travel insurance.

 

Hope this post was helpful

 

Question tags

How to apply for a Belgium visa

Requirements to apply for Belgium visa

Cost of a Belgium visa

Duration to process a Belgium visa

Belgium visa interview tips

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